ISASMELT™ cleans up Ilo copper smelter
Southern Peru Copper Corporation (SPCC) commissioned their modernised copper smelter in Ilo, Peru, in February 2007. SPCC had announced in January 2004 that the smelter modernisation project would proceed with Xstrata Technology providing the core ISASMELT™ technology with Fluor providing EPCM services to the project. Following three years of design and construction activities the project culminated in the official opening of the plant in early 2007.
Xstrata designed the new smelter to ensure that it satisfies new Peruvian environmental regulations that came into force in February 2007. In selecting the technology partners, SPCC considered many copper smelting technologies over a number of years. A combination of factors persuaded them that ISASMELT™ was the preferred technology. The fact that the process can be installed for a relatively low capital cost was stated as a key advantage. Its ease of operation and flexibility as demonstrated by plants running in Australia, USA, India and China, further added conviction to the arguments. Finally, the technology package offered by Xstrata, including training in the ISASMELT™ plant in Mount Isa, Australia, and access to operations experience from more than ten years of operation at a similar scale to the plant at Ilo was a determining factor.
The ISASMELT™ furnace replaced two reverberatory furnaces and a Teniente converter for treatment of 1,200,000 tpa of concentrate. Two rotary holding furnaces are used for separating matte and slag product from the ISASMELT™ furnace. A waste heat boiler and electrostatic precipitator are used to cool and clean the gas before passing it to a sulfuric acid plant. Peirce Smith converters are used for converting the matte to blister copper.
Testimonial from SPCC
“Southern Peru has been working with Xstrata Technology since 2003 and after an evaluation we selected their ISASMELT™ technology for the Ilo copper smelter modernization project. The process is simple to use and the capital cost is significantly lower than the alternatives. The engineering and procurement for the ISASMELT™ technology was developed by Xstrata and also the training program provided by Xstrata in their own copper smelter provided a deep understanding of the process."
Henry Walqui - Director of Projects, Southern Peru Copper Corporation